Titan, the motorsport and automotive components manufacturing specialist based in St. Neots, supported 29 teams during the recently held Formula Student competition, as well as running support programmes for other would-be young engineers.
Formula Student is a university student-focussed competition, in which universities enter a team of students to design, build and compete with, their own racing car. Entrants are not only judged on their performance in the dynamic auto-test style events, but also on overall design, in addition to cost and marketing criteria.
During the 2013 competition, the support Titan gave ranged from supplying steering systems and off-the-shelve components to providing information and data for the design and costing challenges the teams faced. “Supporting engineering talent matters at Titan” comments managing director Adrian Shepherd. “We’re delighted to help the various teams in Formula Student, which is a great competition to excite engineers and help them in their careers.”
It is not only UK-based teams that Titan is supporting; teams from Belgium, Czech Republic, France, Germany, India, New Zealand, Poland, Spain, Sweden and the USA have all benefited from Titan’s support. “We’re not only here to support British engineering” Adrian explains. “Of course we support UK University teams. We want to play our part in developing great home grown talent. But as a Global Engineering company we also try to attract the best engineers from around the world. Through our involvement with these teams we hope to incentivise new entrants to the industry to consider pursuing their careers in the UK, given the high number of motorsport companies we have here.”
Titan’s support for young engineers is not just limited to Formula Student. “We run support programmes with Hinchingbrooke and Long Sands secondary schools accepting 16 year olds for a period to show them Titan and introduce them to an engineering career” says Adrian. “We often find that these students enjoy the experience and can see the potential benefit of an apprenticeship as an alternative to two more years of academics. It’s a benefit to identify potential employees, and it’s genuinely satisfying to help open their thinking so that they get a clearer picture of the different career paths open to them”.
In addition to the work with secondary schools, Titan also runs an apprenticeship scheme, through West Anglia Training, where students undertake a combined work and learning programme to gain their engineering degree. “This has been very successful over the years, with all the apprentices on the scheme so far accepting offers to join us full-time” Adrian continues. “I don’t want to be too philosophical about a practice that any forward thinking British business should adopt - but ultimately it’s about UK engineering excellence, better paths of entry and increased potential to retain talent.”